Tag Archives: Technology

President Obama: Three New Initiatives to Help Community Health Centers

Posted by Audiegrl

President Barack Obama shakes hands with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius after signing a memorandum expanding government funded health clinics across the country, Dec. 9, 2009

President Barack Obama shakes hands with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius after signing a memorandum expanding government funded health clinics across the country

White House.gov—Two causes all Americans can get behind are initiatives to improve our health care system and create jobs in a struggling economy. In an effort to accomplish both at once, today President Obama announced that $600 million in stimulus money will go towards improving community health centers across the country:

Starting today, we’re making $88 million in funding available for centers to adopt new health information technology systems to manage their administrative and financial matters and transfer old paper files to electronic medical records. These investments won’t just increase efficiency and lower costs, they’ll improve the quality of care as well –- preventing countless medical errors, and allowing providers to spend less time with paperwork and more time with patients.

That’s the purpose of the final initiative I’m announcing today as well -– a demonstration project to evaluate the benefits of the “medical home” model of care that many of our health centers aspire to. The idea here is very simple: that in order for care to be effective, it needs to be coordinated. It’s a model where the center that serves as your medical home might help you keep track of your prescriptions, or get the referrals you need, or work with you to develop a plan of care that ensures your providers are working together to keep you healthy.

So taken together, these three initiatives –- funding for construction, technology, and a medical home demonstration –- they won’t just save money over the long term and create more jobs, they’re also going to give more people the peace of mind of knowing that health care will be there for them and their families when they need it.

And ultimately, that’s what health insurance reform is really about. That’s what the members of Congress here today will be voting on in the coming weeks.

Now, let me just end by saying a little bit about this broader effort. I know it’s been a long road. I know it’s been a tough fight. But I also know the reason we’ve taken up this cause is the very same reason why so many members from both parties are here today –- because no matter what our politics are, we know that when it comes to health care, the people we serve deserve better.

President Obama announces that the Recovery Act will provide new funding for Community Health Centers to finance new construction, modernize information technology, and build a “medical home” model. December 9, 2009

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23 years of silence: Belgian man breaks through “coma” and communicates

“I screamed, but there was nothing to hear”: Man trapped in 23-year ‘coma’ reveals horror of being unable to tell doctors he was conscious

Conscious but unable to communicate for 23 years after a car accident that was thought to have put him into a deep coma, a quadriplegic Belgian

Rom said he wants to enjoy life again - now that his friends and family know he is not in a coma after all

man has described how medical science finally put an end to his agonizing years of silence.

Now able to make himself understood via a computer and specially built keyboard, the man, Rom Houben, said in the Monday issue of the German magazine Der Spiegel that when doctors made the correct diagnosis, it was like starting a second life.

“I shall never forget the day when they discovered what was truly wrong with me — it was my second birth,” Mr. Houben, now 46, was quoted as saying.

Mr. Houben, who was an engineering student at the time of the accident, lives in a care home near Brussels. He was assumed to be in a persistent vegetative state until three years ago, when the breakthrough was made.

In the interview he recalled the aftermath of the car accident that paralyzed him and the realization that no one understood that he was fully conscious.

“I screamed, but there was nothing to hear,” he said. He added that he then became a witness to his own suffering as doctors and nurses tried to speak with him until they gave up all hope.

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Science Faction: Shrimp’s eye points way to better DVDs

posted by GeoT
Shrimp use remarkable light-sensitive cells that rotate the plane of polarization in light as it travels through the eye.

LONDON (Reuters) – The amazing eyes of a giant shrimp living on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef could hold the key to developing a new type of super high-quality DVD player, British scientists said on Sunday.

Mantis Shrimp

Mantis Shrimp


Mantis shrimps, dubbed “thumb splitters” by divers because of their vicious claws, have the most complex eyes in the animal kingdom.
They can see in 12 primary colors, four times as many as humans, and can also detect different kinds of light polarization — the direction of oscillation in light waves.
Now a team at the University of Bristol have shown how the shrimps do it, using remarkable light-sensitive cells that rotate the plane of polarization in light as it travels through the eye.
Manmade devices do a similar thing in DVD and CD players but they only work well for one color, while the shrimp’s eye operates almost perfectly across the whole visible spectrum from near ultra-violet to infra-red.
Transferring the same multi-color ability into a DVD player would result in a machine capable of handling far more information than a conventional one.
“The mechanism we have found in this eye is unknown to human synthetic devices. It works much, much better than any attempts that we’ve made to construct a device,” researcher Nicholas Roberts told Reuters.
He believes the “beautifully simple” eye system, comprising cell membranes rolled into tubes, could be mimicked in the lab using liquid crystals.
Details of the mantis shrimp research were published in the journal Nature Photonics.
Just why the mantis shrimp needs such a rarefied level of vision is unclear, although researchers suspect it is to do with food and sex.

From:

It’s the EYES, the EYES….

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New Green Ad: From Silicon Valley to The Chamber Of Commerce

Posted by Audiegrl
goinggreen

The new ad, designed to look like an email from Silicon Valley to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, is signed by Silicon Valley Joint Venture president Russell Hancock and Silicon Valley Leadership Group president Carl Guardino.

silicongreenAD-largeTo: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce
From: Silicon Valley
Sent: Tuesday, October 13, 2009 8:37 AM
Subject: Moving Forward on Clean Energy

Silicon Valley is ready to lead the world in the next great technological revolution: clean energy. It’s the best route to prosperity and jobs for America, and to less imported oil. But we need strong policies from Washington that open up the market for this new opportunity.

That’s why we’ve been so disappointed by the opposition of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to clean energy legislation now moving through Congress. While you are a valued business partner on many issues, the San Jose Mercury News called you a “dinosaur when it comes to clean energy”. And companies from PG&E to Apple have resigned from the Chamber over your extreme position on climate and energy legislation.

As our European and Asian competitors move forward to build the next generation of clean energy technology, the U.S. Chamber seems mired in false debates over settled science and a 20th Century approach to energy. It’s time for the “voice of business” to move forward, embrace a market-based cap on carbon pollution, and help lead a new century of American prosperity.

If you won’t, other cutting edge companies are likely to move forward without you — and to speak out in favor of policies that help us create a new, healthy energy future.

Signed,

Russell Hancock, President & CEO

Russell Hancock, President & CEO

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Carl Guardino, President & CEO

Carl Guardino, President & CEO

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Silicon Valley Puts More Pressure On The Chamber Of Commerce Over Climate Change

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Energy Secretary Chu: ‘I Think It’s Wonderful’ That Companies Are Leaving The Chamber Over Its Denialism

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Energy Secretary Steven Chu with President Obama

Energy Secretary Steven Chu with President Obama

ThinkProgress/Zaid Jilani—Recently, there has been a “business backlash” against the U.S. Chamber of Commerce for its extreme global-warming denier views. Businesses, fed up with the Chamber’s resistance to taking any sort of action to curb carbon emissions, have been leaving the business federation one after another. In the past month alone, Pacific Gas & Energy, Exelon, Public Service Company of New Mexico, and Apple have left the U.S. Chamber of Commerce over its extreme views on climate change.

Yesterday, during a solar energy event at the National Mall, Energy Secretary Steven Chu was asked by a Reuters reporter what he thought about the exodus of businesses from the Chamber. He replied by telling the reporter that he thinks it’s “wonderful” that companies are leaving:

green_dollar“I think it’s wonderful. I think that companies like that, Exelon, for example, others are saying that we have to recognize reality. In order to position the odd states in an economically competitive place and also to make the world minimize the dangers of significant climate change for our children and grandchildren we’ve got to go in this direction. So they’re saying, we can’t be a party to foot-dragging, to denials to things of that nature.”

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Apple Quits the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Over Its ‘Frustrating’ Global Warming Denialism

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“Cleantech” The next “Big Thing” for the economy?

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posted by GeoT

SAN FRANCISCO – By JORDAN ROBERTSON, AP Technology Writer
Our economy sure could use the Next Big Thing. Something on the scale of railroads, automobiles or the Internet — the kind of breakthrough that emerges every so often and builds industries, generates jobs and mints fortunes.

Silicon Valley investors are pointing to something called cleantech — alternative energy, more efficient power distribution and new ways to store electricity, all with minimal impact to the environment — as a candidate for the next boom.

And while no two booms are exactly alike, some hallmarks are already showing up.

A year into the Great Recession, innovation isn’t slowing. This time, it’s better batteries, more efficient solar cells, smarter appliances and electric cars, not to mention all the infrastructure needed to support the new ways energy will be generated and the new ways we’ll be using it.

…Big bets are being placed. The Obama administration is pledging to invest $150 billion over the next decade on energy technology and says that could create 5 million jobs. This recession has wiped out 7.2 million.

And cleantech is on track to be the dominant force in venture capital investments over the next few years, supplanting biotechnology and software. Venture capitalists have poured $8.7 billion into energy-related startups in the U.S. since 2006.

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